On Friday, the Hillcrest Comets were hosted by the West Central Area Knights in Barrett for a double header. The teams split with the Knights shutting the Comets out 4-0 in game one. The second game finished in dramatic fashion with the Comets coming from behind to take the victory 13-12 on a walkoff two run triple by senior pitcher Nicole DeKok.
The Comet bats were quiet in game one as first baseman Jordan Matranga had the only hit of the game for Hillcrest. Dekok pitched well and did not give up an earned run, but some key fielding and mental errors allowed the four runs to score. "The Knights came ready to play and they are very good at making contact at the plate," commented Coach Craig Nersten. He added, "They are well coached and very disciplined all the way around".
Game two was a different story for the Comets as they played well in the field and their bats were far more productive. With the Knights jumping out to an early 7-1 lead, the Comets battled back scoring multiple runs in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th innings, cutting the lead to 9-12 going into the 6th inning. Center Fielder Anna Newman scored on a base hit by shortstop Hanna Lavin in the sixth which cut the Knight's lead to 2 runs. Dekok pitched a 1-2-3 seventh inning and then the Comets had their chance. Right fielder Juliana Undseth led off with a sharp grounder up the middle for a single. Matranga also singled making it first and second with no outs. DeKok came to the plate, drove a long ball over the left fielder's head scoring both baserunners and giving the Comets the walk-off victory, 13-12.
"Anna Newman was fantastic today. She was really focused at the plate and she came up big. I was also impressed again with Nicole DeKok. She really composed herself at the plate and on the mound. I'm hoping this second game can be the trigger we need to kick it up a notch as we approach the playoffs. I was proud of the girls and happy to see the fight in them," said Nersten.
Game two offensive leaders for the Comets were: Matranga (3-4, 1 3B, 3 runs, 2 RBI), DeKok (2-3, 2 3B, 3 RBI) and Newman (2-4, 4 runs, 2 RBI).